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The First 41.....The Next 41!


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The Hawks are now at the midway point of the season, capping off last night's 41st game with a win bringing our W-L record to 9-32. A win where we saw a glimpse of what our returning trio of Trae Young, Kevin Huerter and John Collins could be.




It's been a rough season, suspensions, injuries, strength of schedules, youth, the aged ones, coaching mishaps, etc - all had their part to play.

My biggest takeways (despite all the excuses above) that could have helped us get more that 9 wins:

• The Veterans - not helpful, actually downright useless. Not in the locker room or on the court.

• The Center Rotation - what's that you ask - yeah me to.

• The Back-Up Point Guard - we needed one.

• The Bench - badly needs upgrading.

• The Defense

The next 41 games begins Friday against the Spurs. 2020 so far has been reasonably good for the Hawks, we are playing better as a unit, just need to learn how to execute the game plan down the stretch.

Travis Schlenk spoke about expectations for the 2nd half of the season here..




What are you looking to see from this group as currently constructed? (for this exercise, I'm assuming NO SIGNIFICANT trades).

As a team:

Get and Stay Healthy, Reduce TOs, Communicate on defense, Rebound, Reduce the number of blowout games, continued growth and improvement from.our rookies.


Trae - reduce TOs, defense, balance running the team with his affinity to score.

Huerter - consistency, he now appears fully healthy

Hunter - Stop dissapearing, increase rebounds.

Reddish - get Lasik, seriously - his shooting needs work.

Collins - I would like to see LP run some plays for him. I don't want him to fall in love with the 3 too much. Keep working on his defense - he's gotten adept at being a weakside shot blocker, work on team and man defense.

Bruno - Welcome back! Hopefully he gets more playing time in the 2nd half of the season, I see no reason to not play him.

Graham - take advantage of every opportunity. I like his game.

Len - get and stay healthy and handle your bunnies.

Bembry - dat boy gotta learn to finish at the rim. He gets there easily then it all goes to **** - bad pass or easy miss.

Parker - get healthy, the jury is still out. Need his bench scoring

Jones - we know he can catch lobs and dunk. Defense and rebound, not so much

Vince - less playing time, please. Hopefully Parker is back soon and he'll soak up most of the PF minutes

Crabbe - I really need him to up his 3pt percentages over the next 3 weeks so we can find a viable tease.

The Aged Ones - Bye Bye


We have 21 days - 11 games before the Trade Deadline. What will our record be?

Home - Pistons, Raptors, Clippers, Wizards, Sixers, Celtics

Away - Spurs, Thunder, Raptors, Mavericks, Timberwolves.

I would like to see us win at least half of our home games and at least 1 on the road.


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Our backup pg spot seems to be finally set with Goodwin.  Kevin is starting to get back to form but we need depth behind him.  Ready for Bembry to kick rocks! Bruno is going to be good but I think he’s better suited as a 4.  Jones is strictly a backup 5 but I doubt he’s back but I definitely prefer him over Len.  Cam and Hunter at the 3 we are set and both can play some 2.  We have to have vets that can come in and help these young stars.  I’m truly excited with the potential of this team!!

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55 minutes ago, blkbigdog35 said:

Our backup pg spot seems to be finally set with Goodwin.  Kevin is starting to get back to form but we need depth behind him.  Ready for Bembry to kick rocks! Bruno is going to be good but I think he’s better suited as a 4.  Jones is strictly a backup 5 but I doubt he’s back but I definitely prefer him over Len.  Cam and Hunter at the 3 we are set and both can play some 2.  We have to have vets that can come in and help these young stars.  I’m truly excited with the potential of this team!!

I'm the opposite, :lol:.

Len has bad hands, but he's a better defender in the PnR and at the rim and better rebounder, has a better offensive gsme as well

Jones is usually out of position on rebounds which leads to fouling, turns the wrong way on defense too - he love the 'butt defense' which ususlly leads to a foul.

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4 hours ago, blkbigdog35 said:

This is my issue with Len is he’s inconsistent and lacks intensity a big man his size should have.  He plays as soft as a marshmallow sometimes.  With a 7’4” wingspan he should be a better rim protector.  

He's just slow to the rim. He's actually gotten better this year.

Pierce told him if he didn't defend he'd be on the bench.

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We’re at the halfway point of the season and the Hawks are 9-32 — a far cry from where many expected this team to be entering this season. It shouldn’t be a surprise, however, that this team is as bad as it is because of the roster Travis Schlenk built. It’s simply not good. The Hawks upgraded their backup point guard position Thursday by acquiring Jeff Teague, who spent his first seven seasons in Atlanta. They still need more production out of the bench and their rookies, but getting Teague should help stabilize a second unit that has been horrid most nights.

The one thing head coach Lloyd Pierce is looking for out of the Hawks for the remaining 41 games requires just one word.

“Consistency,” he said.

Trae Young: A 

Young is an All-Star. It doesn’t matter that he plays for the worst team in the NBA. 
Young is averaging 29 points and 8.5 assists per game while consistently drawing double teams, and for at least 25 games, he was the only player teams truly had to scheme against.
“I’ll tell you, first-hand, as a coach who votes, it’s hard to vote for teams with our record,” Pierce said. “It really is. (But) it’s hard to vote against a guy with his numbers. We would love to be in a position where our record helps him more than anything. Because Trae being at the All-Star event helps our organization, helps our team. We’re excited. We’re proud. We want him to be there.”
Young’s defense for the first quarter of the season was very bad, but it has improved from where it was. Because of the noticeable defensive improvement, he has to be an A because his offense has been nothing short of excellent.

Kevin Huerter: B
For the second straight year, Huerter had a slow start to the season because of an offseason injury. He sustained a shoulder injury against Denver which caused him to miss 11 games. Since then, Huerter has been the Hawks’ second-best player.
He’s shooting better than 40 percent from 3-point range this season, a mark that Huerter believes he should always be surpassing.

Alex Len: B
Len described his start of the season as “pretty bad.” It was worse than that.
He’s now having his most efficient offensive season in his career with a 58 percent effective field goal percentage and is making 63 percent of all his 2-point attempts, a career-best by far.
Where he has improved the most this season is on the defensive end of the floor. Defense is not something he has ever been known for, but he has developed into an above-average defender and has provided solid rim protection.

John Collins: B-
Collins’ suspension derailed any hopes the Hawks had of making the playoffs. 
Defensively, Collins has been phenomenal. Having him at center has worked well in a small-ball lineup. He has gotten more opportunities for blocks while playing center, and his block rate ranks in the 87th percentile, according to Cleaning The Glass.

Jabari Parker: C
Parker has missed nine of the past 10 games with a throat infection and a shoulder impingement injury that is going to sideline him for at least a few more games.
But when he was healthy, Parker played a critical role in filling in for Collins when he was suspended 25 games.
Parker’s defense has been an issue his entire career, and this year is no different. I don’t think there’s any hope of him becoming a good defender,

Brandon Goodwin: C
There has been a small sample size with Goodwin being that he only has played in 12 games. Even with the addition of Teague, Goodwin belongs in the NBA.
What I’ve been impressed with most with Goodwin is his defense. Even with him being a small point guard, he’s pesky and a very good example of what Young can be if he exerted himself on that end of the floor.

Cam Reddish: C- 
The offense has been dreadful for Reddish. The numbers are historically bad and comparable to draft lottery busts.
But why I think he has been slightly better than average is because of his defense. Reddish already has become the team’s best defender. He has become the go-to guy who guards the opposing team’s best wing player recently, which is something I predicted would happen in my predictions piece I did at the start of the year. His block and steal rates are both above the 75th percentile for all wings. 
His ceiling is higher than De’Andre Hunter’s if he can figure it out on offense, and Reddish’s defense gives him the nod over Hunter for being the team’s best rookie so far.

De’Andre Hunter: C-
Unremarkable is probably the best adjective I would use to describe the first half of Hunter’s rookie season. There’ve been many games when Hunter is just unnoticeable. They need more out of Hunter. He’s leading all rookies in minutes per game and doesn’t stand out in any category amongst his peers. 
Hunter was drafted because defense was a purported strength of his after winning college basketball’s defensive player of the year award last year at Virginia. His block and steal rate both rank below the 20th percentile for all wings, and his offensive and defensive rebounding rates are also below the 20th percentile.

DeAndre’ Bembry: D
Bembry is arguably the most frustrating player to watch nightly and definitely leads the team in moments when I’ve mentally said, “What are you actually doing?” But there are moments when he’s completely locked in and flying around on the court and making plays.
There were hopes entering the season that Bembry’s shooting would get better, but it has gotten worse. He’s shooting 25 percent from 3 and 51 percent from the free-throw line.
Pierce likes the energy Bembry provides off the bench and his ability to defend, but his individual defense has been an issue more times than not this season.

Damian Jones: D
If basketball was just about catching lobs and scoring in the paint, Jones would be one of the league’s best players; but alas, it’s not. Jones hasn’t shown much of anything to warrant him coming back next season, even with the team needing centers as Fernando is the only one under contract.

Bruno Fernando: D
Hey, do you want to know who leads the Hawks in net rating this season? That’s right; it’s Fernando. Now if you have watched the Hawks play, you would know that Fernando is nowhere near the most productive player on the roster. He hasn’t been good and shouldn’t be playing as much as he does. Barring a magical run, the Hawks aren’t making the playoffs and the rest of the season should be about growth and development for players like Fernando, so I would expect him to get more minutes if they don’t add another center at the trade deadline.
The main problem Fernando has is he has been out of position countless times this season, and it’s noticeably frustrated some of the players on the floor with him when it has happened. 

Vince Carter: D- 
Carter became the first player in NBA history to play in four different decades this year, but he hung on one year too long. He’s unplayable if he’s not making 3s, and he’s only hitting 27 percent of his attempts this season.

Evan Turner: D-
There haven’t been many worse offensive players in the NBA this season than Turner. Synergy ranks him in the second percentile in points per possession. He doesn’t have a future on this roster and likely will be traded or bought out around the deadline.

Chandler Parsons: F


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